May 29, 2024

UMW Announces 2018-19 Common Read

UMW has selected Dear Evan Hansen text and accompanying soundtrack as the UMW Common Experience for 2018-2019 academic year.

Featuring a high school student with a social anxiety disorder who struggles to make social connections, Dear Evan Hansen is a 2015 stage musical with music and lyrics by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, and a book written by Steven Levenson. The musical premiered in Washington, D.C. in 2015 and opened on Broadway in 2016. Dear Evan Hansen’s original Broadway cast recording entered the Billboard 200 at number eight in February 2017.

A launch party will be hosted on Wednesday, May 2 from 2-4 p.m. in the University Center’s Magnolia Room (406A). UMW faculty and staff are invited to stop by to pick up a complimentary copy of the book and sign up to be a facilitator for the Common Experience Discussions on Friday, August 24.

UMW will also be creating a video of UMW community members singing “You Will be Found” from the Dear Evan Hansen soundtrack. A video camera will be available at the launch party for recording. Individuals or groups can also email video clips to by Friday, June 1. Piano accompaniment for recordings is available at

If you cannot attend but would like to participate in the Common Experience discussions, please contact Kelli Slunt at Join the conversation on social media with #youwillbefound.